When we think of the Independence Day holiday, as with most holidays, we think of FOOD! And when living with dietary restrictions or allergies, it can feel overwhelming to think ‘what will I eat?’ at your favorite cookout. The great news….there are some really simple modifications to ensure you can enjoy those classic BBQ dishes, while feeling confident that you can stick within your dietary needs.
· Starter appetizer: sub out a cheese board for a fresh avocado salsa with corn chips. Up the ante with a Cowboy Salsa (rinsed canned black beans, fresh corn kernels, diced fresh tomato, fresh cilantro, diced avocado, light granulated garlic powder and fresh lime juice – that’s it!).
· The Burger: there are a few options here. Try all-natural grass-fed beef, ground organic turkey with diced onions and granulated garlic powder, ground organic chicken with diced onions and dried rosemary, or a portobello mushroom cap marinated in red wine vinegar/olive oil/salt/pepper/granulated garlic powder/Italian seasoning.
· Cheese: if you’re lusting after that classic cheesy-goodness for your above burger, try VioLife Cheddar or Smoked Mozzarella slices – these are entirely plant-based and add a delicious bit of flavor.
· The Bun: a favorite here, if having that scrumptious bun for said burger is a must – Schar Ciabatta or O’Dough’s Seeded Hamburger bun. Both have minimal ingredients, zero or low sugar and you can feel confident that you’re making a healthy choice!
· Potato Salad: try using roasted sweet potatoes mixed with red onion, dried cranberries, crushed walnuts, fresh thyme and lightly dress with olive oil; add salt/pepper to taste. The flavors of the sweet potatoes, cranberry and thyme will shine!! If you just need to have that creamy mayonnaise-feel, use a tablespoon or two of Sir Kensington’s avocado oil-based mayonnaise.
· Coleslaw: a raw broccoli mix is a heart-healthy option as the base. Included is red cabbage, broccoli stems, kale and carrots. Mix this with a little olive oil, apple cider vinegar, yellow onion, pine nuts or dry roasted pumpkin seeds, fresh parsley and season with salt/pepper and you’ll have a delightful side slaw!
· Macaroni Salad: use your favorite recipe and sub traditional macaroni for Jovial’s gluten-free brown rice pasta (comes in many fun shapes/sizes) and use Sir Kensington’s avocado oil-based mayonnaise.
· Red white and blue dessert: make up a nice platter of fresh watermelon slices, fresh cut strawberries, fresh blueberries and sliced jicama. Yes, jicama! It’s a lovely white root vegetable with a crisp texture and refreshing sweet flavor. You could also add fresh chopped mint!!
~If you want a little extra flair here, you could also use So Delicious Coconut Whipped topping – it’s low in sugar so you have little guilt and with the natural sweetness of coconut, you can revisit that light and fluffy whipped cream holiday classic!
The greatest part of celebrating July Fourth is remembering the value of FREEDOM! Whether opting to live a healthier lifestyle, following doctor’s orders, experimenting with weight loss, accommodating dietary restrictions or just because you CHOOSE to eat a cleaner diet….know that you can freely enjoy delicious barbecue picnic dishes! Happy Fourth! With much gratitude for living in the land of the free and the brave – may we all be empowered to live with the freedoms that bring us our best life!
I’d love to hear how you enjoy these twists on summer holiday classics! Please share your comments and feedback!